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Muslim Americans aim for high turnout, new influence in 2020: CAIR-Florida duplicating efforts

By MARIAM FAM and ELANA SCHOR, For Tulsa World | AP , On 31 October 2020, Read Original
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Muslim American groups and activists have organized with a heightened sense of urgency this fall, setting up phone banks, virtual town halls and rallies aimed at maximizing voter turnout, especially in battleground states. Many hope that in states with notable Muslim populations, such as Michigan, energizing more of them can make a difference in close races and illustrate the community’s political power.


VoteCast’s 2018 data showed that about 8 in 10 Muslim voters backed Democrats, while two-thirds of U.S. Muslims either identified as Democrats or leaned toward the Democratic Party in a 2017 Pew Research Center survey.

One obstacle to boosting Muslim voter turnout is that some lack enthusiasm for either Biden or Trump. Others cite religious beliefs for not wanting to be involved in politics, said Raniah El-Gendi, programs and outreach director at the Florida chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

El-Gendi and others have been working to counter views that could keep some away from the ballot box. "Part of our faith is improving the environments and the societies that we live in,” she said. Many activists also urge Muslim voters to think beyond the presidential race to the impact other down-ballot races can have on their lives.

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